Wednesday, April 22

Dikembe



We may all be Sonic fans, but getting us to agree on something isn't a given. Best player? Some might say Payton, some would choose Kemp, or perhaps Haywood, or even Sikma.

Best coach: Wilkens or Karl? Best team: '95-96 or '78-'79?

We can all agree on this, though: The toughest moment in Sonic history was watching the Sonics lose to the Denver Nuggets in 1994. Up 2-0, the Sonics dropped three straight. And it wasn't just three straight to some random team - it was three straight to the home of the Denver Broncos and their horse-faced quarterback.

If you ask any Sonic fan the most haunting image in team history, it's the image of Dikembe Mutombo lying on his back, squeezing the basketball between his massive palms, a look of sheer joy mixed with exhaustion on his face.

For 15 years, I've hated that moment, but today, with news that Mutombo's career is over after a knee injury last night in Portland, I'm relaxing my attitude a bit.

Mutombo's career - an amazing 18-year journey - is now over. In a few months, maybe I'll go back to hating this moment again, but today, viewed through the prism of watching this giant man seeing his athletic career end, well, I'm filled more with a feeling of happiness for his success than I am with intense disappointment at a Sonic failure.

Congratulations on a remarkable basketball career, Dikembe. If one man had to symbolize the Sonics' most disappointing failure, I'm glad it was you.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Let your Georgetown love shine on through. AI & Mutombo can now walk hand in hand into the sunset together.

Good riddance to both.

Junio Claudio said...

I was a teenage Sonic fan in 1994 and I was stunned that day...I hated Dikembe that day but now I feel so sad for him. regards from italy

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